Stephanie Baroni Cook

Christian+Giver of Life+Military Spouse+Veteran+Writer+Photographer+SAHM+World Traveler+Yoga Junky

Mother's Day Is So Painful If You Struggle With Infertility

A few years ago, I was getting ready to leave my office for the weekend when my coworker nonchalantly wished me a Happy Mother's Day. I was stung. She couldn't possibly have known this, but at the time, I was trying to conceive with my husband. Just…
By Stephanie Baroni Cook

Why Ashton Kutcher's Capitol Hill Speech Matters

By now, most of us have seen the viral clip of Ashton Kutcher testifying last week on Capitol Hill about his firsthand experiences combating human trafficking via his nonprofit organization, Thorn. In his moving testimony, he described the…
By Stephanie Baroni Cook

I Deployed After 9/11 & It Changed My Life

"We're in peace time right now, this next four years will be a breeze!" my recruiter said to me just before I enlisted in the Navy. It was a hot July in California and the summer before my senior year of high school. Neither of us could have known…
By Stephanie Baroni Cook

Yep, My Daughter Is "That Child"

That Child. You know the one I am talking about. The kid you saw having an epic meltdown in the grocery store while their mother stood stoically by. Maybe she was wearing her poker face, bravely pushing her shopping cart as her child continued with…
By Stephanie Baroni Cook

I Went Dairy Free While Breastfeeding For My Baby's Colic & Here's How It Went

I've never really been one to go on crazy diets. I had a brief stint trying Paleo, but realized I'd just prefer moderation and balance as opposed to rules and restrictions. I've always battled with my weight, so knowing myself and how I work, I know…
By Stephanie Baroni Cook

People Constantly Judge Me For Extended Breastfeeding My 3 Year Old Daughter

Sometimes it feels like it was only yesterday that I brought home my eldest daughter. I can still remember when the nurse laid her on my chest, the first moment when I felt her little heartbeat against mine. It was instant love, and it hit me like…
By Stephanie Baroni Cook

Why I Went Dairy Free For Breastfeeding

If you would have told me a year ago that I'd go dairy free for breastfeeding, I probably would've laughed in your face. Things had gone so well breastfeeding my first child that I couldn't imagine things being any different with my second. I'd also…
By Stephanie Baroni Cook

My Baby Has Colic & This Is What It's Like

Colic. Where do I even begin? If I had to sum it up, I'd say having a baby with colic is exhausting, frustrating, infuriating, and overwhelmingly heartbreaking. Watching a helpless little infant — your helpless little infant — cry incessantly for…
By Stephanie Baroni Cook

What Our Biggest Fight As New Parents Revealed About Us Both

There is no bigger milestone in a marriage or relationship than when you become parents. You know challenges lie ahead, but you don't understand how big or important they'll until you're in the thick of it. There are countless things my husband and…
By Stephanie Baroni Cook

My Toddler Is Jealous Of My New Baby

"You're gonna be such a good big sister!" friends would tell my toddler when they found out I was pregnant. Sadie would look at them and giggle, and I always laughed. Considering she didn't even know what a sister was at the time, nor did she have…
By Stephanie Baroni Cook

The Most Important Breastfeeding Advice I Got Came From My Lactation Consultant

I don't know how many times I've thought back to the day I first met my lactation consultant, Megan, at the base Starbucks we lived close to when I was only three weeks postpartum after the birth of my first child. I met her through a mutual friend…
By Stephanie Baroni Cook

Another Mom Insulted My 3-Year-Old Daughter & It Felt Like A Slap In The Face

About two months ago, I was at a birthday party for one of the kids my 3-year-old daughter goes to school with. I was also one-week postpartum after the birth of our second child, and chock full of postpartum hormones. I was sitting at a table…
By Stephanie Baroni Cook

I Was Fit-Shamed During My Pregnancy For All The Wrong Reasons

I have been shamed for a lot of things in my life: my acne, the fact that I wear glasses, for having curves, and for breastfeeding in public uncovered, just to name a few. The one thing I never thought I would be shamed for was being active and for…
By Stephanie Baroni Cook

This Is How Being A Christian Shapes My Parenting

Growing up, I pretty much had freedom over whichever religion I chose to practice. My dad was Catholic and my mom was Lutheran, and I remember they both had Bibles with their names engraved in the leather binding – but going to church as a family…
By Stephanie Baroni Cook

After Giving Birth, I Hemorrhaged On The Bathroom Floor

How do I start this? How do I tell you that one of the best days of my life was also one of the scariest? How do I put into words the terror I felt after hemorrhaging on the bathroom floor after giving birth? How do I even make sense of it? I’ve…
By Stephanie Baroni Cook

My Colicky 2-Month-Old Baby Put A Serious Strain On My Marriage

Let me just say that parenting a toddler and a 2-month-old baby has made me well aware that the struggle is real. So real that my husband and I have gotten into arguments over it. I can't focus on anything else when the baby is throwing a fit, and I…
By Stephanie Baroni Cook

Honestly, Breastfeeding Is Really Lonely

For all of the wonderful things that breastfeeding makes me feel, the one thing I never really expected was just how lonely breastfeeding can be. Of course I know that even though breastfeeding is mostly a solo act I can pump and my husband can give…
By Stephanie Baroni Cook

I Donated My Breast Milk To Strangers & I'm So Glad I Did

If someone had mentioned to me three years ago that I would donate my breast milk one day, I would've given them the most confused face ever. I didn’t even know donating your breast milk was a real thing until I became a mom. In fact, the only…
By Stephanie Baroni Cook

I'm Tandem Breastfeeding & This Is What It's Like

I gave birth to my youngest daughter just about two months ago, and ever since her arrival, I've been tandem breastfeeding my toddler and my newborn. For the most part, I hate it. It often feels like the second I'm done breastfeeding my baby to…
By Stephanie Baroni Cook

I Recreated 5 Celebrity Mom Instagram Photos & This Is What Happened

I think we can all agree here that the celebrity moms of the world are beautiful. They’ve got time and money to hire personal trainers, stylists, and maybe a nanny or two. Celeb women with kids are dressed flawlessly, even when they’re running out…
By Stephanie Baroni Cook